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A Happy Return: Language Instructor Comes Back After Decade Away

(Posted August 28, 2014)

Photo courtesy Lety Temoltzin

Leticia "Lety" Temoltzin is currently on the Juniata campus to work as a Visiting Language Instructor and also as this year's sabbatical replacement for Spanish professors Holly Hayer and Henry Thurston-Griswold. Unlike many of Juniata's visting language experts, Lety already knows the ways of the college because she is returning to campus after 13 years away. In 2001, Juniata hired her for her first job after earning her certification as an English as a Second Language instructor. Lety reflects on her return.

Q: What was your first teaching stint at Juniata like?

A: In 2001 Juniata was my first teaching experience, so I had to get used to the fact that education is different in Mexico. Students in Mexico are very laid-back, while students in the United States are a little more actively involved. As a teacher, I learned to plan ahead.

Q: What was your lasting memory of the first Juniata experience?

A: It has to be that everyone was so warm and friendly to me. It was not just in the classroom. People would go out of their way to help me with places to go shopping or what to do on weekends.

Q: What are you going to be doing this year at Juniata and how do you feel about returning?

A: This time I have much more experience and I will be teaching some of Holly and Henry's courses in Spanish. As an ESL instructor, I have not taught in Spanish for a long time, so, for me, it will be a learning experience to return to speaking Spanish in class.

Q: What class are you getting excited to teach?

A: Introduction to Latin American Culture. We do more in-depth work on the political and social situations in Latin American countries and my experience is that American students have a different idea about Mexico and Latin America from television and the news, so that will be interesting to teach.

Q: How has Juniata changed since your first teaching job?

A: I think the people and students are pretty much the same, very friendly, but the biggest change is in the technology. The books often come with a technological component and the courses are taught using Moodle. We don't use technology as much in Mexico, but it's great to get experience using special tools to help you teach.

--John Wall, director of media relations

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.